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Following footsteps

Employee continues tradition of service

Side-by-side photo of 1970s and 2017 letter carriers
Owensboro, KY, Letter Carrier Josh Hayden is following in the footsteps of his late grandfather, Julian Hayden, who delivered mail in their community a generation ago.

When Josh Hayden became a letter carrier in Owensboro, KY, three years ago, he set out to do the same thing his grandfather once did — deliver mail and make a difference.

“He was real proud to work for the Postal Service,” Hayden said of the late Julian Hayden, a letter carrier who spent his personal time helping those in Owensboro with disabilities.

Josh is making his mark by serving as a coordinator for the Stamp Out Hunger food drive — and the community is noticing his civic contributions.

The Messenger-Inquirer, a local newspaper, recently published an article about Josh’s efforts to continue his grandfather’s legacy. To illustrate the piece, Josh donned his grandfather’s old uniform and recreated a 1970s-era photo of Julian.

“I thought it would be a really great idea to recreate the picture because I have had people for many years tell me that I remind them of my granddad,” said Josh, who later presented a framed version of the side-by-side image to his father.

Josh received the photo of Julian last year when a staff member at Owensboro’s Wendell Foster Center contacted him to explain how his grandfather’s fundraising was responsible for the center’s existence.

In the 1970s, Julian organized a group of letter carriers to participate in the “Postman’s March,” a fundraiser to help children with disabilities.

The money raised from several marches went to build the center, which honored Julian by donating several hundred pounds of food during this year’s Stamp Out Hunger drive.

“They said they wanted to help letter carriers because of what my grandfather and other carriers did for them,” Josh said, adding that he’s proud to continue in Julian’s footsteps.

“I got … his initials, I’m doing his job and performing community service,” he said.

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